Cycling pals take on mountain

Pictured are, from left - Dan Simmons, Fraser Bruce, Ian Lewis and Paul Crooks.
Pictured are, from left - Dan Simmons, Fraser Bruce, Ian Lewis and Paul Crooks.
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A man from Grantham has completed the Snowdonia Charity Challenge, raising money for sports injury charity Regain, and is taking part in another charity event next month.

Dan Simmons, 41, of Harrowby Road, Grantham, took on the challenge last weekend, as part of a four-man team. The group were hoping to beat last years’s winning time of six hours and two minutes, which they did, completing the challenge in five hours and 34 minutes.

Dan said: “We beat the other 70 teams hands down, the nearest coming in 28 minutes behind us.”

The group is made up of a mixture of RAF officers and civilians. They have already managed to raise £1,400 for Regain, but they are keen to keep going and to raise as much as possible.

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Dan said: “Winning the event was an unexpected bonus for us; we will be returning to defend our title next year and this will allow us to raise more money for such a worthy cause.”

The challenge comprises of a 20-mile cycle from Llanberis to the Rhyd Dhu path. The competitors then climb and descend Mount Snowdon on foot.

Then they have a further 10-mile cycle to Lake Gwynant to canoe around the lake, before finishing another 20-mile cycle ascending and descending the Llanberis Pass.

Dan is a former Red Arrows display pilot and RAF squadron leader who flew Harrier jets during his service career, and served in Afghanistan. He is part of the defence company Inzpire, which offers expertise in military aviation, and is based at RAF Waddington. He lives with his wife Alison, a teacher, his son Cameron, 14, and daughter Ellie, 12.

Dan was serving in Afghanistan in 2008 when his son was diagnosed with type one diabetes, which is the most serious form of the condition.

On August 4, he plans to join 20,000 other cyclists in the ‘RideLondon-Surrey 100’, to raise money for Diabetes UK. The event is a 100-mile bike ride along the 2012 Olympic route in London. The group starts at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park and finish in the Mall.

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